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Welcome to Medical Mythology where we dive deeper into current medical practices and offer common-sense solutions. Scroll down to read more about the Mythology of Knee Surgery. 

In the realm of medical interventions, knee surgery is often presented as the quick fix solution for those with persistent knee issues. But what exactly is knee surgery, and does it live up to its reputation as the go-to fix for all knee-related problems? Let’s work here to demystify the knee surgery saga, common reasons for surgery, and the factors often overlooked in the quest for healthier knees. We included a “Only Get Knee Surgery After…” section below! 

Foundational Knowledge You Need to Know

Medical interventions (medication, surgery, injections, etc.) target the area that hurts. The area that hurts is rarely the root issue. For example, the knee pain that you experience is simply the area of your body that is getting repeatedly beat up because other areas of the body are not functioning properly. The goal of medical mythology is to uncover the root issues that your healthcare provider does not evaluate or treat you for.

What is Knee Surgery?

Knee surgery is a medical procedure designed to address various issues related to the knee joint. It can encompass a range of interventions, from arthroscopy for minor repairs to complex procedures like knee replacement for severe cases of joint deterioration.

When and Why Do People Typically Get Surgery?

People opt for knee surgery when faced with persistent knee pain, injuries, or conditions that significantly impact their quality of life. Common reasons include ligament injury, meniscus tears, arthritis, or wear-and-tear issues that impede daily activities.

What Knee Surgeries Do Not Take Into Consideration?

While knee surgeries can be effective in many cases, they may not always address underlying issues such as silent neurologic issues (commonly associated with low back pain), poor biomechanics, or lifestyle factors contributing to knee problems. Treating the symptoms without addressing the root causes can lead to recurring issues even after surgery.

The complexities of knee pain 

These are only a FEW of the risk factors associated with knee pain:

  • Weakness in quads and hamstrings
  • Poor single leg stability
  • Poor glute activation
  • Limitation in ankle mobility
  • History of low back pain and/or injury
  • Joint laxity
  • Overuse injuries
  • Meniscal injuries
  • Obesity

Only Get Knee Surgery After:

  • You have had a full body movement assessment
    • Regional interdependence is something we have written about before, it means seemingly unrelated impairments in a remote anatomical region may contribute to, or be associated with, the patient’s primary complaint” (source)
  • You have had a full neurologic assessment
    • Without a nervous system, nothing in our body functions. This includes assessing nerve mobility, nerve function to the skin and surrounding muscles (dermatomes and myotomes) and assessing reflexes.
  • You have been completing a personalized strength training program for at least 6 weeks
    • Weakness often results in pain. Therefore, putting together a specific strength training program with a doctor of physiotherapy can make all the difference in resolving your knee pain.
  • Had a healthcare professional discuss with you modifiable risk factors that you can change
    • Lose weight, start exercising, begin a workout routine with a doctor of physiotherapy, change diet, and much more

What Should You Be Doing?

Instead of relying solely on knee surgery as a panacea, individuals dealing with knee problems should consider a whole-body approach, incorporating physiotherapy, strength training, and lifestyle modifications into their routine. Strengthening the muscles around the knee, maintaining a healthy weight, and adopting proper biomechanics can play pivotal roles in preventing and managing knee issues.

Knee surgery can be a valuable tool in the medical arsenal, but it’s essential to approach it with discernment. Understanding the education of the surgery, reasons for it, and the factors often overlooked can empower individuals to make informed decisions about their knee health. Rather than viewing knee surgery as a standalone solution, embracing a comprehensive approach that addresses both symptoms and causes is key to fostering lasting change and health.

Tyler Waterway

Author Tyler Waterway

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